The vast number of health benefits that avocado offers is virtually unmatched by any plant on the planet. It has abilities to lower cholesterol and the risk of heart disease or attack, it relieves symptoms of arthritis, boosts nutrient absorption, reduces macular degeneration and lowers the risk of cataracts, and it even prevents cancer. As an excellent source of fiber, potassium, and healthy fats it helps treat numerous other health related issues.
Avocado trees most likely originated in Southern Mexico and were cultivated for centuries before North America was colonized. The pear-shaped fruits are a delicious, rich food that make an excellent condiment or eat alone addition to your diet. The trees are warm season plants, easily damaged by cold and frost.
Avocado trees can reach 80 feet in height. Most plants do poorly where freezing temperatures may occur. Gardeners in United States Department of Agriculture zones 8 and below should be wary of trying to grow these trees as outdoor plants. This fact leads to the question, “Can avocado trees grow indoors?” The simple answer to this question is yes. In fact, there are several dwarf varieties, which can help the cold and temperate season gardener produce the healthy fruits in their own home.
How to plant and grow avocado indoors
- Extract the seed
The first thing you need to do is extract the seed from the fruit, making sure you don’t cut it. Next, you’ll need to wash the seed. Soak it in water for a while, and then scrub any fruit that’s left on the fruit potentially. DO NOT remove any of the brown skin while scrubbing the seed.
- Pierce the seed
Avocado seeds are typically elongated in shape, but some of them are an exception to this rule. Each seed has a bottom, or the area from whish the root grows, as well as a top, the area from which the plant sprouts. The bottom is more flat, and the top is pointy. It is crucial for you to determine which side is the bottom, and stick it with a toothpick as you put the seed in water in order to avoid submerging it entirely.
- Soak the seed in water
As mentioned before, place the bottom half of the avocado in water, making sure that the toothpick stands firmly. You can stick the avocado seed at an angle which can ensure that the plant rests in water when set over a glass.
- Let the seed sprout
In a period of 3-6 weeks the top part of the seed will split, and a stem sprout will appear. At roughly the same time the roots will grow from the bottom part of the seed. Cut off any longer leaves that you notice coming out of the stem, when the stem eventually reaches 5-6 inches in length. In 2-3 weeks more leaves will sprout, this time from the bottom part too.
- Trim the sprout
Once your avocado sprout reaches 6-7 inches in length, sprout its tail in half in order to ensure fresh growth.
- Set things up for planting
Make sure you have a large planting soil and high-quality potting soil. Fill the pot with soil reaching about an inch from the top. Your pot should be 8-10 inches across. Create a small hole at the center of the pot and place the seed in it. Water generously.